About a Boy

May 17th, 2002







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more trailers About a Boy

Still of Hugh Grant in About a BoyStill of Hugh Grant and Rachel Weisz in About a BoyStill of Hugh Grant in About a BoyHugh Grant, Nicholas Hoult, Chris Weitz and Paul Weitz in About a BoyChris Weitz and Paul Weitz in About a BoyStill of Hugh Grant and Nicholas Hoult in About a Boy

Plot
Based on Nick Hornby's best-selling novel, About A Boy is the story of a cynical, immature young man who is taught how to act like a grown-up by a little boy

Release Year: 2002

Rating: 7.2/10 (71,958 voted)

Critic's Score: 75/100

Director: Chris Weitz

Stars: Hugh Grant, Nicholas Hoult, Toni Collette

Storyline
Twelve year old Marcus Brewer lives with his chronically depressed single mother, Fiona Brewer. Both Fiona and Marcus beat to their own respective drummers. Marcus will do whatever he can to make his depressed mother happy, even if it causes himself grief. As such, he realizes that he is perceived as different than most kids, as even the self-professed weird kids don't want to hang out with him as he is the target of bullying. Part of the taunts against him are the fact that he sings and speaks to himself without even realizing that he is doing it. Meanwhile, thirty-eight year old Will Freeman is a slacker who has lived comfortably off the royalties of a song written by his deceased father, and as such has never had to work a day in his life. He is a solitary man who places himself as the first and only priority in life. He comes across the idea that dating single moms meets his selfish carnal needs...

Writers: Nick Hornby, Peter Hedges

Cast:
Hugh Grant - Will Freeman
Nicholas Hoult - Marcus Brewer
Sharon Small - Christine
Madison Cook - Imogen
Jordan Cook - Imogen
Nicholas Hutchison - John
Ryan Speechley - Barney
Joseph Speechley - Barney
Toni Collette - Fiona Brewer
Natalia Tena - Ellie (as Nat Gastiain Tena)
Laura Kennington - Ellie's Friend
Tanika Swaby - Ellie's Friend
Peter McNicholl - Ellie's Friend
Christopher Webster - Ellie's Friend
Ben Ridgeway - Lee

Taglines: Growing up has nothing to do with age.



Details

Official Website: Universal Pictures [United States] |

Release Date: 17 May 2002

Filming Locations: BFI IMAX Cinema, Charlie Chaplin Walk, South Bank, Lambeth, London, England, UK

Box Office Details

Budget: $27,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend: £3,747,966 (UK) (28 April 2002) (446 Screens)

Gross: $84,600,000 (Worldwide) (17 November 2002) (except USA)



Technical Specs

Runtime:



Did You Know?

Trivia:
Jon Bon Jovi, who both Marcus and Will attribute the phrase "no man is an island" used the quote in the opening lyrics for the song "Santa Fe" from his soundtrack for the movie Young Guns II.

Goofs:
Continuity: At the end of the movie, before Will sits on the couch with Marcus, he picks up a nearly full bottle of beer. When he sits on the couch, the beer bottle is almost empty.

Quotes:
Will: I couldn't possibly think of a worse godfather for Imogene. You know me. I'll drop her at her christening. I'll forget her birthdays until her 18th, when I'll take her out and get her drunk and possibly, let's face it, you know, try and shag her. I mean, seriously, it's a very, very bad choice.
Couple: We know, I just thought you had hidden depths.
Will: No. No. You've always had that wrong. I really am this shallow.



User Review

a sterling comic gem

Rating:

I think I smiled all the way through `About a Boy,' a comic near-masterpiece derived from the best-selling novel by Nick Hornby. For the sake of accuracy, both the novel and the film should more rightly be titled `About TWO Boys,' since the story focuses not only on 12-year old Marcus, but on 38-year old Will, a man totally dedicated to the proposition that any man who so desires can live quite happily on his own private little urban island, thank you very much. Will's `island' is his own London flat, which he has equipped with all the accoutrements of comfort and diversion that modern technology – in the form of computers, big screen TV's and DVD players - can afford. Who needs people when you have so much `stuff' to keep you content and occupied? Will thrives in his environment, much to the chagrin of his married couple friends who keep insisting that he must certainly be miserable without a wife and family to give his life meaning. But Will loves being shallow – a fact of his personality he is more than willing to declare right up front – and the last thing he needs – or thinks he needs – is people to clutter it up. Yet, island dwellers have a tendency not to remain marooned for long, and, before he knows it, Will finds himself striking up a relationship with a lonely, backward boy named Marcus, whose mother suffers from serious bouts of suicidal depression.

More than any comedy in recent memory, `About a Boy' establishes a tone and sticks with it to the end. The screenplay by Peter Hedges, Chris Weitz and Paul Weitz (the latter two function as the film's directors as well) manages to take a potentially clichéd and predictable story and invest it with a warmth, wit and tenderness that are all-enveloping. The voice-over narration by both Will and Marcus, which introduces us to their characters and keeps us informed as to their mental progress throughout the film, is remarkably clever and droll. Yet, the characters never come across as smug, smart-alecky or flippant. Rather, they speak and behave in ways that are both believable and realistic. Hugh Grant gives his richest performance to date as Will, the man who refuses to grow up and assume the role of responsible adult, blithely unaware of the emotional depths that lie hidden under a surface of apathy and indifference. The superb Grant is more than matched by relative newcomer Nicholas Hoult, an extraordinarily gifted young actor who doesn't look like the average `adorable' screen kid, and who makes Marcus into a very real, very likable and very sensitive young man. The remainder of the large cast is outstanding as well. Moreover, the film is very astute in its observation about just how easy technology has made it for us to isolate ourselves from one another. Admittedly, a little of the sharpness does go out of the screenplay in its closing stretches, but not enough to diminish one's pleasure appreciably.

In many ways, `About a Boy' is a movie that needs to be experienced first hand, since mere words fail to convey the very special charm and spell it manages to cast over the viewer. Rush to see it. Comic gems like this one don't come around very often!









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